This is an idea that has been brewing in my mind for quite some time. It all started when I met Srikant for the first time and started understanding the work that he does. A few years back Srikant was diagnosed with a life threatening illness. He successfully got treated and in the process learned how the medical system in the government hospitals work. Since then he has been helping poor patients access medical treatments from Government hospitals in Delhi. He has been the inspiration behind the idea.
The idea is simple.
A lot of poor patients in India need medical treatment for which they don’t have money. A lot of people want to help such patients but they either don’t know where to find them or are not sure if their money will be used for the right purposes. This is where we come in. We will work with a variety of NGOs, Government institutions and Hospitals to identify patients in need of financial support for medical treatments and list them on this platform. Then we will crowd fund to raise the money. We will guarantee that the money will be used for its intended purpose.
The name of the platform is inspired by this saying in the north of India- “Neki Kar aur Dariya mein Daal” . Neki kar is hindi/urdu for “do a good deed” and hence DoNeki.
Doneki is a completely charitable effort, which means volunteers, donations and minimum overhead. There are already two volunteers who are giving time to do research on what is the need on the ground and what kind of institutions we should be working. We are looking for volunteers who will help us do due diligence on patients, hospitals and NGOs. We are also looking for people who can help in building the crowd funding platform. marketing, PR , communications experts are also wanted.
We are also open to new ideas, or criticism or anything that helps us move forward in our desire to make a difference to those who cannot afford to help themselves. Even if we can help one patients its still worth doing. I can’t help but quote a story that I read long long time ago on Give India ( http://www.giveindia.org) annual report.
Here it goes.
Once upon a time, there was an old man who used to go to the ocean to do his writing. He had a habit of walking on the beach every morning before he began his work. Early one morning, he was walking along the shore after a big storm had passed and found the vast beach littered with starfish as far as the eye could see, stretching in both directions.
Off in the distance, the old man noticed a small boy approaching. As the boy walked, he paused every so often and as he grew closer, the man could see that he was occasionally bending down to pick up an object and throw it into the sea. The boy came closer still and the man called out, ”Good morning! May I ask what it is that you are doing?”
The young boy paused, looked up, and replied “Throwing starfish into the ocean. The tide has washed them up onto the beach and they can’t return to the sea by themselves,” the youth replied. “When the sun gets high, they will die, unless I throw them back into the water.”
The old man replied, “But there must be tens of thousands of starfish on this beach. I’m afraid you won’t really be able to make much of a difference.”
The boy bent down, picked up yet another starfish and threw it as far as he could into the ocean. Then he turned, smiled and said, “It made a difference to that one!”